Prices of goods may rise amid Roxas Blvd truck ban

By Alvin Elchico, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 02 2014 04:12 PM | Updated as of Dec 03 2014 12:12 AM

MANILA – Prices of goods may go up with the plan of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) to implement a truck ban on Roxas Blvd. starting tomorrow for six months.

Philippine Amalgamated Supermarkets Association Inc. (PAGASA) president Steven Cua said prices of goods are going to be affected once truck drivers take detours, which will result in longer travel hours and more fuel to burn.

"Maaaring tumaas ang presyo kung it affects the supply of prime commodities," he said.

According to the group, it would have been better if the truck ban is implemented on January after the holidays rather than now when demand usually picks up because of the holiday season.

"From a businessman's point of view, sana after Christmas season na lang, mga early January," said Cua.

Slight tightness in supply

Cua also said there is a slight tightness in the supply of pasta and fruit cocktail. He said supply has bought by consumers who have started buying for their Noche Buena fare.

He said this may be a symptom of an impending shortage but the issue is still manageable.

He added that while shoppers have started going to the supermarkets, the shopping rush will still be felt by the second or even third week of December.

The Supply Chain Management Association of the Philippines also said the flow of goods will be affected by the MMDA truck ban on Roxas Blvd.

The group's secretary general Norman Adriano said anything that impedes the flow of goods increases the cost of the goods and hamper supply delivery.

Once the goods are delayed, Adriano said its hauling cost will also increase and eventually the additional costs will be passed on to the consumers. Goods that will be affected include food items, toys, and apparels that consumers buy especially during the holiday season.

According to Adriano, truckers have already jacked up rates due to the port congestion and now comes this truck ban ordered by MMDA.

While the objective may be good, Adriano said the impact will be bad for consumers as prices and supply will likely be affected.

"Nakatutulong ba? Palagay ko hindi kasi it only aggravates the situation," he said.

When asked when is the right time to implement the ban, the group said there should be no truck ban at all to ensure the smooth flow of goods from manufacturers to retailers and eventually to ordinary consumers.